So many potential summer events but no idea what to do…

I have a dilemma.

I really want to sign up for some summer races/rides as motivation and something to look forward to over the next few months, but I’m just not sure if it’s actually worthwhile.

I’m not confident that I’ll actually be able to stay healthy and do enough running workouts to really feel like racing is worthwhile, and I’m not sure if the for-fun style long rides that I’ve looked at as alternatives will really be that fun on my own – what if I end up alone in a crowd of people who are riding with friends? I might as well save the entry fee and just go for a long ride on my own some weekend. What I really want out of a long ride is the challenge, but also the companionship – I just want to get together with some crazy friends, go for a ridiculously long ride and then recover with ice cream, burgers, beer, and banter. But I have no crazy athlete friends here yet :-/

On the competitive side, I’d look at bike races but my bike is 30 years old and doesn’t even have true drop handlebars…and I don’t really feel like I have the technical skill to compete on the bike without terrifying those around me! Triathlons are appealing, but most of the nearby ones require wetsuits (don’t have one) and I have nowhere to train for swimming unless I want to pay for a gym membership.  Duathlons would be sweet as well, but again, there’s the whole issue of keeping my legs/feet healthy enough to complete the running portion. If I could trust that my current upwards mileage-tolerability swing would continue, I’d be set, but I haven’t exactly had a great history with that these last few years…

I think I may just be getting antsy to do some sort of competitive/athletic even since I haven’t done anything of that sort since my rather botched uphill road race way back in January before the Calf Troubles. I just want a free t-shirt and a bib number and some hard-earned post-race food, dang it! It’s been far too long and I miss it.

Little problems, but still…*sigh*